The project for the upgrade and expansion of Entebbe International Airport is critical to the development of the air transport industry in light of the growing passenger and cargo traffic figures. While Entebbe International Airport handled 118,000 international passengers in 1991 at UCAA’s establishment, the Airport handled 1.65 million passengers in 2017 and 1.84 million passengers in 2018.
In the first part of 2019, January to June 2019, 913,284 passengers were recorded in comparison to 842,582 recorded in the same period of January to June 2018, an indicator of 70,702 more passengers already.
It is partly for this reason that Arrivals Immigration counters were earlier increased from 14 to 20 and Departure Immigration counters increased from 6 to 11 to reduce on long queues.
The major upgrade includes several components and by September 2019, the overall construction progress was at 56% level of completion. In specific terms;
Taxiway K has been connected to Taxiway A and is only awaiting completion of the Cargo aircraft parking Apron, which was at 81% in September 2019. Taxiways are used by aircraft after landing to connect to the parking bays.
The second alternative Runway 12/30 – was 94% complete in September 2019.
Completion of the new cargo center will enable UCAA to relocate cargo operations from the current dilapidated structures to the new. This will pave way for construction of a new Terminal building in the area where cargo operations are currently undertaken.
As part of the cargo complex, there are works on an Access road and service road.
On completion of the new Cargo Centre, the current cargo facilities will be brought down and a new Terminal building erected in that area connecting to the current and this will be ready in 2021.
Work on The Fuel Hydrant Line & Fuel Farm is also ongoing
The fuel tanks will eventually have capacity to store a total of 23 million liters of aviation fuel. The initial aviation fuel capacity will be 17 million liters, up from the current 7.5 million litres. The Fuel Firm and Hydrant System will also serve the new Cargo Centre, among others. aircraft parking Apron 4 which was erected in 2007 is also being rehabilitated and the first half is expected to be completed by end of December 2019. Reconstruction of the VVIP aircraft parking Apron 2 is also ongoing.
In relation to Modification of the current passenger terminal building, the ongoing work by Seyani Brothers (U) Ltd were at 67% in September 2019. It is aimed at creating more room for departing passengers. On completion, a departure road will be re-instated whereby departing passengers will be dropped off at the entrance to the terminal building.
While the current maximum capacity of Entebbe International Airport is 2 million passengers, on completion of the first phase of works in 2021, the Airport will have capacity for 3.5 million passengers.
A Terminal operations Control Centre has also been erected by Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) to ensure automation of operations as part of a USD 9.5 million grant by the Government of South Korea.